Making the transition from the high school level to college is a well-documented challenge, but Husker defensive back Lamar Jackson’s learning curve was different than most.
In a series of questions from 24/7 Sports’ Mike Schaefer, Jackson talked about what it meant for him to have to learn on the fly last season, and what lessons he will carry into his sophomore year. Jackson was one of the defensive players that met with the media on day three of fall camp, and he schooled the gathered media scrum on what his first season at the college level taught him about his approach to the game.
“It ain’t like high school football. You ain’t going to be the best, you ain’t gonna just walk around. You’ve got to come to work. That’s the biggest difference is coming to work versus coming to play. I noticed that early, but now I’m embracing it. I already knew that last year I struggled, like on some days you just feel like “Things are getting hard, I’m shutting down. I ain’t got nothing in the tank.” But now I’m emptying the tank, I ain’t holding nothing back. I’m just coming to work.”
– Lamar Jackson
Husker Defensive Back
Unlike most freshman adapting to a new level, Jackson played in every game for the Huskers last fall, both on defense and in special teams, and even started in the Music City Bowl against Tennessee. But after starting the year with six tackles against Fresno State, including five for a loss, Jackson finished the year with 17 total tackles in 13 games.
Now in year two, Jackson said he is looking to take a more mature mindset and a business-like approach to the game, and turn it into on-field production. And after an injury to senior starter Chris Jones, the Blackshirts as a unit will also need Jackson to have “more in the tank” and help fill the void left in the secondary.
– Compiled by Pat Radigan